The Bad News:
Last Friday at noon I was headed to the 405 on Laguna Canyon Road when suddenly the traffic came to a complete stop in front of Ganahl Lumber. The traffic crawled until it got passed the pedestrian light at Laguna College of Art and Design. As I was creeping up to the light, I could see the light was malfunctioning because first it would flash its yellow lights, then its reds, then the red would go solid but for only a moment. After which there would be no lights and then a moment later the cycle would begin again. It’s a wonder traffic moved at all. As I continued to drive out, I noticed the traffic coming in was backed up well past El Toro Road. I made a mental note not to return via the Canyon Road and to avoid the road as much as possible in the future.
The Good News:
There must be many drivers that feel as I do. What about all those drivers that don’t originate in Laguna Beach and use Laguna Canyon Road as a short cut to the toll road? Will they eventually become fed up with the traffic jam caused by the signal that is confusing even when it isn’t malfunctioning? If so, we may end up with less traffic in the canyon. That is the good news plus perhaps those council members who are hell bent on widening the road might finally see the light (pun intended).
The pedestrian light that Caltrans installed after the tragic accident that killed a LCAD student was installed to avoid further tragedies. This was a good thing to do but it has never worked well for the road and needs to either be better managed or replaced with a traffic signal. How about moving the pedestrian crosswalk to the entrance to the school’s parking lot and have a traffic light serve a dual purpose?
Johanna Felder , Laguna Beach